For the most part, our pantry staples are pretty common. We keep canned tomatoes and beans, dried pasta, boxed broths, baking supplies, etc. However there are a couple of other unique items I like to keep on hand just in case.
Just in case a recipe for Greek Chicken & Eggplant Stew crosses my path.
I was skimming through the pages of some of my oldest cookbooks and that’s where I found the inspiration for this dish. We always have boneless chicken breasts in the freezer and I had just purchased an eggplant with the intention of spiralizing it into noodles. My just in case ingredients paired perfectly with this recipe, those being canned artichoke hearts and jarred mushrooms.
Greek Chicken & Eggplant Stew on it’s own is mild with a certain creaminess we’ll attribute to the eggplant. When it came time to serve I opted for a little flavor punch. That’s where the Citrus Herb Gremolata came into play. Finely minced fresh oregano, lemony thyme, garlic and fresh spinach with lemon zest, toasted buttered panko breadcrumbs and a pinch of salt. It was absolutely perfect with this dish. Gremolata will find it’s way onto many future dishes. Fresh herbs are our friends.
- 1½ lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 Tbl. flour
- 1 Tbl. olive oil
- 1 medium eggplant, peeled & cubed (about 2 cups)
- 1 6-ounce jar mushrooms, or 6-ounces sliced fresh mushrooms
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- ½ tsp. dried basil
- ½ tsp. dried thyme
- 2 cups fat-free chicken broth
- ¼ cup dry sherry
- ¼ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- 1 14-ounce artichoke hearts, drained
- 4 ounces cooked pappardelle pasta
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 2 Tbl. butter, melted
- 2 cups fresh spinach leaves, finely chopped
- 1 Tbl. fresh oregano, minced
- 1 Tbl. fresh lemony thyme, minced
- zest of one lemon
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- pinch of salt to taste
- Place chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic wrap; pound to an even thickness. Cut each breast in half. Lightly dust with flour.
- Heat olive oil in a heavy bottom pan or Dutch oven. Brown chicken pieces on each side. Remove. Add eggplant, mushrooms, onion, garlic and seasonings to pan; cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Return chicken to pan. Stir in chicken broth, sherry, salt & pepper. Simmer covered for about 1 hour or until chicken is done and juices run clear. Add in artichokes during last 20-minutes of cooking.
- Combine citrus herb gremolata ingredients. To serve, top hot cooked pappardelle pasta with stew. Generously sprinkle gremolata on top.
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